Canadian Underwriter

What’s New: In brief (July 11, 2006)

July 11, 2006   by Canadian Underwriter

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A.M. Best Co. recently released a new podcast series focused on insurance technogy and the E-Fusion conference. The audio series, called the “E-Fusion Podcast,” covers technology developments, conference doletails and the E-Fusion awards. The first episode features an interview with Igor Best-Devereux, CEO of eReinsure, a working online risk-placement system. Each episode includes an interview with a technology leader associated with the E-Fusion conference, which is set for Oct. 23 and 24 in Boston. The two-day conference focuses on developments in insurance technology, insurance issues and operations. Part of the conference involves finalists making presentations for the E-Fusion awards. The E-Fusion awards, which are independently judged, seek to recognize innovative uses of insurance technology. This is the second podcast series released by A.M. Best. The company began producing BestDay Audio, a daily podcast wrapping up insurance news worldwide, earlier this year. That podcast features insurance news and interviews. E-Fusion Program chairman Lee McDonald says: “Our next podcast episode will focus on some of the new communications platforms insurers are using to reach their field force and customers.” Links to listen to and subscribe to the E-Fusion podcast are available at To subscribe via a podcast client, visit

Canada’s home, car and business insurers are advising homeowners in B.C. to check their insurance coverage now, rather than waiting until forest fires threaten their communities. This warning comes in light of the fact this season there have already been over 1,000 forest fires and 71 active fires currently burning in the province. “We remember all too well the summer of 2003 when we saw some tragic situations,” Lindsay Olson, vice president, Pacific Region, Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC), says. “Some homeowners were caught either without insurance or without adequate insurance.” Olsen says in order to sidestep such catastrophe insureds can be proactive and understand their insurance year-round not just when “the fire is roaring down the hill.” During natural disasters, Olsen tell consumers in a press release, insurance companies may have temporary underwriting restrictions in place an this makes instantaneous purchasing or upgrading of insurance exceptionally difficult. Olson stresses that insurance companies will continue to renew policies for all existing customers even during a state of emergency, just as they did during the historic fires in 2003. Canada’s insurers will also be there to promptly deal with all claims. “Our industry stepped up and did our part during the 2003 fires, and we are ready to do so again,” Olson concludes. “Homeowners could help themselves now by checking their insurance, and taking steps to mitigate the risk to their homes and property.” For more information on preventing fire around your home, visit the BC/Yukon section of IBC’s website to obtain a copy of The Homeowners FireSmart Manual (Courtesy of the BC Forest Service Protection Program, Government of British Columbia).